Calif. Senate takes $11B water bond off November ballot

SACRAMENTO — The state Senate has passed two measures that would pull California's $11.1 billion water bond from the November ballot and shelve it until 2012.

Lawmakers voted in favor of the bills Monday evening, sending them directly to the Assembly. AB1260 and AB1265 require a two-thirds vote from both houses.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and other supporters are pushing for the delay out of concern that voters will reject the bond while the state is grappling with a $19 billion budget deficit.

Critics say the bond is too expensive and loaded with pork-barrel projects. They had wanted it to stay on the ballot in the hope it would fail.

A half-dozen senators — mainly Democrats — voted against the bills Monday, but it was not enough to block them.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.